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to the offertory, before which we solemnly bless the holy water; then I make them say all together, after me, the Pater, the Ave, and other prayers they know. In the afternoon I propose to them some little question from the Catechism, and make them give account of what they have learned during the week, giving to each some little prize according to his merit.
This method, along with the little rewards, has wonderful results. For, in the first place, it has kindled among all the children so great a desire to learn that there is not even one who, if it can stammer out words at all, does not desire to be instructed; and, as they are almost all fairly intelligent, they make rapid progress, for they even  teach one another.
I cannot tell you the satisfaction and consolation these little children give us. When we consider their Fathers, still plunged in their superstitions, although recognizing sufficiently the truth, we are afraid that God, provoked by their sins, has rejected them for a time; but, as for the children, without doubt he holds out his arms to them and draws them to himself. The eagerness they show to learn the duties of a Christian keeps us from doubting it. The smallest ones throw themselves into our arms, as we pass through the Cabins, and do not require to be urged to talk and to learn. Father Daniel hit upon the plan of quieting a little child, crying in its mother's arms, by having it make the sign of the Cross. And indeed, one day when I had just been teaching the Catechism to them in our Cabin, this child made us laugh; its mother was carrying it in her arms, and was going out; but, as soon as she reached the door, it began to cry so that she was com
de la Croix: Et de fait, vn iour que ie venois de leur faire le Catechifme en noftre Cabane; cet enfant nous fit rire: fa mere le portoit entre fes bras, & s'en alloit, mais elle ne fut pas fi tost sur le seüil de la porte qu'il se prit à pleurer, de forte qu'elle fut contrainte de rentrer; elle luy demande ce qu'il auoit, Que ie recommence,  dit-il, que ie recommence, ie veux encor dire. Ie luy fis donc faire derechef le figne de la Croix, & il fe prit incontinent à rire, & à fauter d'aife. I'ay veu le mesme vne autrefois pleurer bien fort pour auoir eu le doigt froiffé, cependant s'appaiser, & rire, auffi-toft qu'on luy eust fait faire le figne de la Croix. Ie m'eftend volontiers fur ce fuiet, ne doutant point que les bonnes ames ne prennent plaifir d'entendre toutes ces particularitez; dans les commencemens de cefte Eglife naiffante, que pouuons nous raconter finon les begayemens de nos enfans fpirituels? Nous auons vne petite fille entre autres nõmee Marie Aoefi8a, qui n'a point sa pareille; vous diriez que tout fon contentement foit de faire le figne de la Croix, & de dire fon Pater & Aue, à peine auons nous mis le pied dans fa Cabane, qu'elle quitte tout pour prier Dieu. Quand nous affemblons les enfans pour la priere ou pour le Catechifme, elle fe trouue toufiours des premieres, & y accourt plus gayement que plufieurs ne feroient au ieu; elle ne bouge de chez nous, & ne se laffe point de faire le figne de la Croix, & de dire & redire cinquante fois le iour le Pater & Aue; elle le fait faire aux autres, & vn de nos  François eftant arriué de nouueau; pour tout compliment, elle luy prift la main, & luy fit faire le figne de la Croix. Souuent elle fe trouue dans la campagne quand nos Peres y recitent leur Office elle
pelled to turn back.
She asked it what was the mat
ter. "Let me begin again,"  it said, "let me begin again, I want to say more. I then got it to make again the sign of the Cross, and it immediately began to laugh and to jump for joy. I saw the same child, another time, crying hard because it had had its finger frozen; but it quieted down and laughed, as soon as they had it make the sign of the Cross. I dwell willingly upon this matter, as I am sure pious souls take pleasure in hearing all these particulars. In the beginnings of this infant Church, what can we speak about if not the stammerings of our spiritual children? We have one little girl, among others, named Marie Aoesiwa, who has not her equal. Her whole satisfaction seems to be in making the sign of the Cross and in saying her Pater and Ave. Scarcely have we set foot in her Cabin, when she leaves everything to pray to God. When we assemble the children for prayers or for Catechism, she is always among the first, and hastens there more cheerfully than many would to play. She does not stir from our Cabin, and does not omit making the sign of the Cross, and saying over and over fifty times a day the Pater and Ave. She gets others to do the same; and, one of our  Frenchman having newly come, her only greeting was to take his hand, and have him make the sign of the Cross. Often she is in the field when our Fathers recite their Office there; she stands in the road, and, almost every time they return, she begins to make the sign of the Cross, and to pray to God in a loud voice.
Another little girl named Catherine had often been wayward about receiving instruction, and so had not been rewarded like the others. Some days afterward,
se tient dans le chemin, & presque autant de fois qu'ils fe retournent, elle fe met à faire le signe de la Croix, & à prier Dieu à haute voix.
Vne autre petite nommee Catherine, auoit fait souuent la difficile à fe faire inftruire, & en fuite n'auoit point efté recompenfee comme les autres: quelques iours apres vne fienne compagne l'amena à vn des noftres, luy faifant accroire qu'elle eftoit toute dispofee à dire; mais quand ce fut au fait & au prendre, elle fit à l'ordinaire; alors ceste petite qui l'auoit amenee fe mift en humeur, & employa toute fa petite rhetorique naturelle pour luy déferrer les levres, & la faire parler, tantoft vfant de menaces, tantoft luy faisant efperer quelque recompenfe de moy, si elle difoit bien, & fit fi bien qu'elle en vint à bout au grand contentement de celuy des noftres qui l'efcoutoit.
Vn autre bien qu'apporte cefte practique conforme à noftre Inftitut, eft que les grāds mefmes demeurent [deviennent] par ce moyen inftruits;  car le defir que les peres & meres ont que leurs enfans foient loüez & recompenfez de quelque prix, fait qu'ils s'inftruifent eux-mefmes pour inftruire leurs enfans; particulierement beaucoup de grandes filles prennent plaifir à imiter les petites. Quand elles retournent du bois, fouuent elles s'arreftent au premier de nos Peres qu'elles rencontrent, & luy difent ta arrih8aienstan sen, enseigne moy ie te prie, & quoy qu'elles foient bien chargees, elles ne font point contentes qu'on ne leur ait fait dire le Pater & l'Aue. Quelquesfois mefmes elles nous preuiennent, & de fi loin qu'elles apperçoiuent quelqu'vn de nous autres, elles fe mettent à dire ce qu'elles fçauent. Quelle confolation d'entendre retentir ces campagnes du nom de
one of her companions brought her to one of our Fathers, giving him to understand that she was quite disposed to learn; but, when it came to the point, she acted as usual. The little girl who had brought her became annoyed, and used all her little natural rhetoric to make her open her lips and to get her to speak,- sometimes using threats, sometimes holding out a reward from me if she spoke properly; she was so earnest that she succeeded, to the great satisfaction of those of our Fathers who were listening to her.
Another benefit that results from this practice — which is in conformity with our Institute—is, that even the adults become instructed by this means;  for the desire of the fathers and mothers that their children should be praised and rewarded leads them to be instructed themselves, in order to teach their children; particularly many older girls take pleasure in imitating the younger ones. When they are returning from the forest, they often stop the first of our Fathers whom they meet, and say to him, ta arrihwaienstan sen, "Teach me, I pray thee;" and although they may be well laden, they are not satisfied unless he has them say the Pater and the Ave. Sometimes they anticipate us, and, from as far as they can see one of our Fathers, they begin to recite what they know. What a consolation to hear these districts resound with the name of JESUS, where the devil has been, so to speak, adored and recognized as God during so many ages.
This exercise also enables us to improve greatly in the use and knowledge of the language, which is no small gain. Generally speaking they praise and approve the Christian Religion, and blame their wicked customs; but when will they leave them off entirely?